Tommy Wright had few complaints after the first leg of the Red Insure Cup final ended in stalemate.
Corby Town and Poole Town shared a 1-1 draw at Steel Park to ensure the tie remains firmly in the balance for the second leg on the south coast on March 31.
The top two in the Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division cancelled each other out for long spells as Greg Mills’ long-range effort brought the Steelmen level after Richard Gillespie had given the league leaders an early advantage.
And Corby boss Wright conceded Poole “did a job” on his team in a frustrating second period.
“It was probably a fair result,” the Steelmen manager said.
“They got the early goal, we got back into it but to be fair they held firm in the second half.
“They did a job on us and the referee let them get away with a lot of time-wasting, which killed the game. It killed the tempo and it wasn’t easy on the eye.
“But it’s half-time. It’s 1-1 and I think that was a fair outcome.
“There was one team genuinely trying to play the football and trying to win a game and the other side played a very tactical game.
“We had chances but it was always going to be a tight game. You know what you are going to get when you come up against Poole.
“They are organised, disciplined and they have a way of playing. But it’s effective.”
As far as the second leg is concerned, Corby will need to score as away goals will count at the end but Wright believes things will be a bit more open when the two teams clash again.
“Both teams will have to come out and try to score a goal,” he added.
“We know we need to score a goal because the away goals count. Our game plan doesn’t change at all. If we had won 3-0 then it would be completely different.
“In fairness, 1-1 is probably the best outcome to go down there and make it a free-flowing game.”
Both teams now turn their attention back to the league as the Steelmen continue their pursuit of the leaders, who are two points clear with three games in hand.
Corby head to play-off chasing Redditch United at the weekend while Poole host mid-table Bideford.